It takes a different sort of mental makeup to play special teams. Much less glamorous than throwing touchdowns and hitting the griddy, special teams are often when fans go to the bathroom, look at their phones, or wonder how every kicker makes every kick against the Vikings. Special teams plays are inherently dangerous, include players running at car crash speeds, and are constantly looked at as a place where the NFL may be able to change the rules to make the game safer. It is not for the faint of heart.
To get to the NFL, many players were superstars at their respective position. Kris Boyd is no exception. Boyd, who played high school ball in Gilmer, Texas, won Offensive Newcomer of the Year as a running back, was first-team All-District, won a state championship, and was selected to the U.S. Army All-America Bowl. In College, Boyd was named second-team All-Big 12 and first-team All-Big 12 at Texas as a defensive back.
Running a 10.58 100 meter in high school and 4.45 40 at the combine, Boyd has NFL speed. He has combined that speed with the mentality and technique required to play on almost all of the Vikings’ special teams units.
Boyd made one of my favorite plays of the Vikings’ season so far. Way back in Week 4 as the Vikings took on the Saints in London, I wondered how I would wake up on Sunday when we all know that the human brain is not ready for football until 12pm CST. Boyd woke me up showing speed, effort, precision, and poise on the way to a huge forced fumble and fumble recovery that would make Matthew Slater proud:
Kris Boyd #29 Special Teams thread:— Shawn (@syedschemes) December 14, 2022
-bottom of the screen as a gunner versus a double, comes back to force and recover a fumble pic.twitter.com/AXQ23btTys
On the other side of the punt unit, Boyd is asked to cover one of the opposing team’s gunners. Boyd is often singled up on them and has the unenviable task of running down an entire field trying to give the punt returner a chance for a return:
Kris Boyd covering the gunner to the top of the screen pic.twitter.com/6ViUtt8slE— Shawn (@syedschemes) December 14, 2022
Boyd also finds himself on the kickoff and kick return units. Though kick returns are less frequent when kickers boom the ball out of the back of the end zone, Boyd has had opportunities to impress in kickoff coverage. Here is Boyd with a nice tackle to start the Vikings Lions Week 3 matchup:
Kris Boyd making a tackle on kick off pic.twitter.com/Ph29by1knq— Shawn (@syedschemes) December 14, 2022
I encourage you to do your football duty and vote for the Pro Bowl. The voting booths will close today and you can submit yours by going to the Vikings’ voting booth here, tweeting out #ProBowlVote Kris Boyd, or simply hitting retweet below. Pro Bowls may not be as glamorous as they once were, but they still can be part of a player’s contract incentives!
Votes count double today and tomorrow!— Minnesota Vikings (@Vikings) December 14, 2022
RT to #ProBowlVote #Vikings Defense@zadariussmith @DHunt94_TX @horribleharry99 @DalvinTomlinson @JBullard90 @EricKendricks54 @JordanHicks @HarriSmith22 @P2 @showtimesully10 @Cambeezy_ pic.twitter.com/TVk5SNxdFf